Contributor, Fitz Dixon to be remembered by community

By Meghan Hurley
September 15, 2006

On August 2, 2006, Fitz Eugene Dixon, Jr. died. A wealthy man and well-known figure in Philadelphia society, Dixon, along with his wife Edith Robb Dixon, was a prominent contributor to the growth of Cabrini College and the state of Pennsylvania.

Their involvement with the college started in 1973 when Edith Dixon joined the Board of Trustees. Sister Mary Louise Sullivan, MSC, who was president of the college when Mrs. Dixon joined, quickly formed a lasting friendship with the couple.

“My association with Fitz almost always included Edie and they were a great team together, a beautiful couple. They were solid citizens, Edie and Fitz, both of them. A loving couple and Fitz himself was just a people person,” Sullivan said.

The Dixon’s contributions to Cabrini were numerous. They have donated funds for the Dixon Center, the Widener Center, the tennis courts, and most recently the brand new turf field. As part of the 10,000 Hearts Campaign at Cabrini, Dixon pledged $500,000 if Cabrini could raise the same amount of money for the field. These funds have impacted the college in more ways than one.

Leslie Danehy, Ed.D., the director of athletics, said “The Dixon’s generosity in the athletic areas at Cabrini, which is evident in the Dixon Center and the new playing surface for the Edith Robb Dixon Field, has helped us remain a competitive force in regional collegiate athletics.”

In a letter to the donors of the Dixon Challenge, Dr. Antoinette Iadarola, president of the college, said, “Unfortunately, Mr. Dixon will not see the new field upon completion, but I know that the field will continue to remind us of what a generous person he was.”

“He was a gentleman, an absolutely perfect gentleman, good sense of humor, with a ‘joie de vivre,’ a love of life. Very interested in so many activities particularly.higher education in general and was very dedicated to that. He was a very well-spoken person an educated man, and had been a teacher,” Sullivan said.

The Dixons did not limit their generosity and their time just to Cabrini College, they were also very involved with what was going on in the state of Pennsylvania. Mr. Dixon served on the Art Commission, the Fairmount Park Commission and the Delaware River Port Authority. Also during his lifetime he had owned the Sixers, the Wings, and parts of the Phillies, the Eagles and the Flyers, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.

He also kept a commitment to higher education and supported other schools. He donated funds to the Dixon School of Nursing at Abington Memorial Hospital and to Widener University, which was renamed for his family in appreciation of their gift, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Mrs. Dixon served as Chair of the Cabrini College Board of Trustees and is a Trustee Emerita. She continues to remain active in the community and the college. Mr. and Mrs. Dixon both were awarded honorary degrees from Cabrini College. According to Sullivan, his philosophy was, “You don’t just sit back and let the world got by, you get involved.”

“He was an incredible person as well as a great philanthropist.Cabrini College has lost a great friend, collaborator and benefactor,” Iadarola said.

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Meghan Hurley

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